Professional skeptics on misinformation & hoaxes: anti-vaxx, Planned Parenthood


Gabriela writes, "Hopes&Fears starts the week with this roundtable in which we invite four professional skeptics to discuss the ins and outs of busting a hoax. From Ben Radford, deputy editor of The Skeptical Inquirer, to Susan Gerbic, founder of Guerilla Skeptics on Wikipedia, we discuss the real potential dangers of misinformation and disinformation in the digital age." Read the rest

The future of photography, education, sharing, news, privacy and learning (seriously)


Jonathan Worth is a celebrated, successful, internationally recognized award-winning photographer who saw the writing on the wall for his business -- selling pictures to magazines -- when he found himself threatening a young girl for pirating his pictures, and decided there had to be a better way. Read the rest

Ashley Madison commits copyfraud in desperate bid to suppress news of its titanic leak

The company is shotgunning DMCA notices against journalists and others who reproduce even the tiniest fraction of the dump of users who signed up to find partners with whom to cheat on their spouses -- included in the dump are thousands of people who paid $15 to have their data permanently deleted from the service. Read the rest

Parenting and the Internet: the smarter, missing third way

My new Guardian column, What is missing from the kids’ internet? discusses three different approaches to teaching kids information literacy: firewall-based abstinence education; trust/relationship-based education, and a third way, which is the proven champion of the offline world. Read the rest

Hong Kong protesters take to the street in bras: "breasts aren't weapons"

The latest anti-corruption mass-uprising symbol in Hong Kong is a bra: it protests the jailing of a female protester who was convicted of "assaulting a police officer" with her boob. Read the rest

UK ECHELON journalist: "Snowden proved spies need accountability"

Legendary investigative journalist Duncan Campbell describes his life of being kidnapped by the London Metropolitan Police's Special Branch, being surveiled and harassed by UK spies and ministers, and reveals the identity of the whistleblower who leaked the details of ECHELON to him. Read the rest

All 40 of the FBI & DHS's post-9/11 terror attack warnings fizzled

And yet, the press keeps on reporting these "reliable intelligence-based" reports of impending attacks on the "homeland" as though you should believe them. Read the rest

CNN mistakes a Pride Parade flag covered in dildos for the ISIS flag

A CNN reporter filed an "exclusive" story about a person carrying an "ISIS flag" at yesterday's Pride Parade in London. Read the rest

"Reporter" who wrote ridiculous story about Snowden leaks in China admits he was just acting as a government stenographer

Tom Harper wrote the ridiculous cover story in the Sunday Times in which anonymous government sources claimed that the Russians and Chinese had somehow gained the power to decrypt copies of the files Edward Snowden took from the NSA, depite the fact that these files were never in Russia and despite the fact that the UK government claims that when criminals use crypto on their communications, the state is powerless to decrypt them. Read the rest

Anti-corruption journalist immolated by cops, allegedly under orders from minister

Jagendra Singh reported on corruption in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh on his Facebook account, which allegedly prompted Ram Murti Singh Verma, a ruling party politician, to send police to his house to burn him alive; he died a week later of his injuries. Read the rest

Sunday Times sends copyright threat to The Intercept over critical article

The Intercept used a screenshot of the Sunday Times front page in a story that criticized the paper for its crappy, gullible, manipulative Snowden reporting. Read the rest

Rupert Murdoch stepping down as Fox CEO

The media titan ran the company like a family business while enjoying access to titanic quantities of capital from investors who were denied access to the decision-making apparatus. Read the rest

LA Times editorial board calls for prosecution of journalistic sources

The LAT's editorial page calls for Snowden to return to the US to be put on trial because we live in a "society of laws," but this commitment to the rule of law only reaches to a single source, and not the many "unnamed sources" who reveal secrets that have been tacitly cleared by the US government. Read the rest

Russia's troll factory

An outstanding expose of Internet Research Agency, a St Petersburg, Russia-based army of trolls for hire who post pro-Kremlin messages to comment forums all day. Read the rest

It's pretty darned easy to pull off a nutritional "science" hoax

John Bohannon teamed up with a German documentary crew to undertake a crappy junk-science study on the effects of bitter chocolate on weight loss, and managed to push their hoax to major media outlets all over the world -- here's how. Read the rest

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